Discuss with children how they would stay safe in the following situations:
• On a bike ride (wear a helmet)
• In a playground (stay with an adult, or tell someone when you’ll be back)
• When a stranger approaches you (don’t talk to them, tell an adult)
• When it’s really hot and sunny (wear sunscreen)
• On a car journey (wear a seatbelt)
• Before crossing a road (stop, look, listen)
Extension. play competitively in teams, with their own made up ‘buzzer’ noises.
Explain that just like in the real world, we have a responsibility to keep ourselves safe in the digital world.
Let the pupils know that the subject of this session is about keeping safe in the digital world.
To establish some of the basic ideas for this session, hand out a copy of Appendix 1: Body Outline. Explain that this is an outline of a typical Year 3 or Year 4 pupil.
• On the outside of the body, pupils should write the name of websites and apps this typical Year 3 or Year 4 pupil likes to use or wants to use.
• On the inside of the body, pupils should write down all the things they need to do to be safe when they go online.
Lead a discussion based on the following questions:
• Who is good at sharing? (Take responses and agree that sharing is a great attribute to have)
• What kinds of things do you share? (Take responses)
• Should we share everything? (Take responses)
• Discuss things that we shouldn’t share. (e.g, passwords, private things, personal information, our bodies, gossip etc.)
Ask the class:
“Sharing things online is very easy, what kinds of things can people share online?”
• You may wish to give an example of something you have shared online such as a photograph of the class on the school website, an update on a sports match or information from a recent event like a summer fair on Twitter or Facebook.
Discuss with the class:
“Sharing information online can be very useful but sometimes it can be dangerous. Can anyone think of something that might be dangerous to share online?”
• Passwords, address, phone number, photos of you in school uniform, what school you go to, any other personal information etc.
Ask the class to look back at the Body Outline sheet. Find out what are the most popular websites and apps in the class, and are there any that lots of people want to use but don’t/can’t?
Discuss with the class:
“Some sites have age restrictions, why do you think this is?”
NB. Make sure that children are clear that even if they do visit or sign up to a site/game/app that isn’t designed for their age and they have an issue or bad experience there is always someone there to help – they shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help and it is not their fault.
Explain that the clip children are going to watch shows the dangers one boy faced when he shared a photo online.
Introduce by saying:
“This is a story about a boy called Alex. Alex is not someone you know, he doesn’t go to your school and Alex isn’t his real name – but his story IS real and we know that this has happened to some children.”
Click to play the film.
Extension. You may wish to replay the clip, this time asking children to put their hands up and down every time they see a danger sign. If they see another danger sign they should put their hand up again so that the teacher can see.
In pairs and then across the group, discuss these questions:
• What happened in the film?
• What were the signs that something that would cause upset was going to happen?
Ask pupils to discuss in pairs the following questions, and feedback their most important point to the class:
• Was it a good idea for Alex to take that photo?
• Should Katie have sent it to other people?
• What was the impact of Katie sending the photo on to other people? On Alex? On his family? On his friends?
• What could Katie have done instead with the picture when she saw it?
Discuss across the class the following:
• Give reasons for why Alex should not have sent the photo in the first place.
• When Alex started to get texts from someone trying to bully him, and a man he didn’t know, what could he have done then?
• What do you think the outcome might be?
Remind pupils that:
• Just like what we eat can make us healthy or make us ill, the things we read, see and hear online can make us feel all sorts of things (e.g. happy, hurt, excited, angry, curious).
• Our feelings can influence what we do and say online and can cause us to forget the consequences of our actions.
• We all have to be responsible and think about what we are doing and what the impact of our actions could be on ourselves, and on other people
Re-visit the safe person online drawings that children did at the beginning of the session.
Ask children if there is anything they would now like to add? For evaluation, it would help to use a different coloured pen/pencil to do this.
Then discuss and ask children to write the tagline ‘Take care when you share. If in doubt, speak out’ at the top of their drawings.
Ask the pupils to think about one thing they’re going to change because of the lesson.
Then remind pupils that if they ever need to speak to someone about something that is bothering them they should talk to a trusted adult. Discuss who these might be – parents/carers, family members, teacher, parish priest etc. If for some reason they feel they can’t, they could always phone Childline for a chat 0800 1111 or contact Childline online.